The gothic in children's literature: haunting the borders

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Routledge, 2008 - Literary Criticism - 254 pages
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From creepy picture books to Harry Potter, Lemony Snicket,the Spiderwick Chronicles, and countless vampire series for young adult readers, fear has become a dominant mode of entertainment for young readers. The last two decades have seen an enormous growth in the critical study of two very different genres, the Gothic and children "s literature. The Gothic, concerned with the perverse and the forbidden, with adult sexuality and religious or metaphysical doubts and heresies, seems to represent everything that children "s literature, as a genre, was designed to keep out. Indeed, this does seem to be very much the way that children "s literature was marketed in the late eighteenth century, at exactly the same time that the Gothic was really taking off, written by the same women novelists who were responsible for the promotion of a safe and segregated children "s literature. This collection examines the early intersection of the Gothic and children "s literature and the contemporary manifestations of the gothic impulse, revealing that Gothic elements can, in fact, be traced in children "s literature for as long as children have been reading.

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Very useful and innovative. Contains a great piece on Hermione Granger by June Cummins Read full review

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About the author (2008)

Anna Jackson is Deputy Keeper in the V&A's Asian Department. Her research interests include the cultural relationship between East Asia and the West in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. She is also responsible for the Museum's collection of Japanese textiles. She contributed essays to Art Nouveau, 1890-1914 (V&A 2000), The Victorian Vision: Inventing New Britain (V&A 2001) and Art Deco 1910-1939 (V&A 2003). Her other publications include Japanese Country Textiles (V&A 1997), Japanese Textiles in the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A 2000). She is also the author of The V&A Guide to Period Styles: 400 years of British Art and Design (V&A 2002).

Karen Coats is an associate professor of English at Illinois State University.

Roderick McGillis is a professor of English at the University of Calgary. He is the author of the award-winning "The Nimble Reader" (1996), "A Little Princess: Gender and Empire" (1996), and "Les Pieds Devant" (2007), and the editor of "George MacDonald: Literary Heritage and Heirs" (2007). He is a former editor of "The Children's Literature Association Quarterly", and former president of the Children's Literature Association.